Skip to content

Tag Archives: Al Bahlul

Petitioner Files Reply in Bahlul v. United States

By
Tuesday, October 7, 2014 at 4:00 PM

Petitioner Ali al-Bahlul filed his reply brief yesterday in Bahlul v. United States, the D.C. Circuit case that will decide whether a military commission may render a stand-alone conspiracy conviction. In the new filing, petitioner makes a point of rejecting the government’s claim for plain error review before elaborating on the four arguments put forth in his opening brief. The argument . . .
Read more »

Confusing the Issues in al Bahlul

By
Wednesday, October 1, 2014 at 10:11 PM

For the two people still following the exchange between me and Peter Margulies over the bottom-side briefing in the al Bahlul D.C. Circuit military commission appeal, I wanted to offer a very quick (and hopefully final) word in response to Peter’s surreply from this afternoon, in an effort to crystallize the true points of departure between . . .
Read more »

Why Article III Matters: A Reply to Peter Margulies on al Bahlul

By
Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 10:23 PM

I must confess that I don’t fully understand Peter Margulies’ response to my post from earlier today. My post argued that the bottom-side briefing in the D.C. Circuit in al Bahlul offers a relatively weak (and, in my view, already debunked) explanation for why Congess can allow allow military commissions to try enemy belligerents for wholly domestic offenses without . . .
Read more »

Article III and the Bottom-Side Briefing in al Bahlul

By
Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 12:02 PM

Jane already flagged the merits brief filed by the U.S. government on September 17 in al Bahlul v. United States, the major challenge to the power of the Guantánamo military commissions to try non-international war crimes that was remanded by the en banc D.C. Circuit to the original three-judge panel back in July (and in which oral argument is . . .
Read more »

Government Files Response in Al Bahlul v. United States

By
Thursday, September 18, 2014 at 6:57 AM

Last month Guantanamo detainee Ali al Bahlul filed his opening brief in Al Bahlul v. United States, in a bid to overturn his conviction for conspiracy to commit war crimes, the single military commission conviction against Bahlul that the D.C. Circuit left standing in its July 14, 2014 en banc ruling (the court vacated his convictions for material support and . . .
Read more »

Three More Amicus Briefs in Support of Petitioner in Al Bahlul v. United States

By
Tuesday, August 19, 2014 at 9:31 AM

Yesterday we flagged two amicus briefs filed on behalf of the petitioner in al-Bahlul v. United States by (1) the National Institute of Military Justice and (2) Professor David Glazier of Loyola Law School. The day saw three more briefs filed on Ali al-Bahlul’s behalf, each presenting different arguments for why the D.C. Circuit should reverse al-Bahlul’s military-commission conviction for conspiracy to commit war crimes. (3) . . .
Read more »

Article III and the al Bahlul Remand: The New, New NIMJ Amicus Brief

By
Monday, August 18, 2014 at 12:59 PM

On July 14, the en banc D.C. Circuit ruled in al Bahlul v. United States that “plain error” review applied to Bahlul’s ex post facto challenge to his military commission convictions for conspiracy, material support, and solicitation–and then upheld the first of those charges under such deferential review (while throwing out the latter two). One of the potentially unintended consequences of the Court . . .
Read more »

Petitioner Files Opening Brief in Al Bahlul v. United States

By
Wednesday, August 13, 2014 at 7:34 PM

Petitioner Ali al Bahlul, the Yemeni detainee who served as Osama bin Laden’s personal assistant and public relations secretary, has just filed his opening brief in Al Bahlul v. United States, in an attempt to overturn his military commission conviction for conspiracy to commit war crimes. In the filing, al Bahlul argues that he was tried for . . .
Read more »

The Lawfare Podcast, Episode #84: Bahlul, Bahlul, Bahlul

By
Saturday, July 19, 2014 at 1:55 PM

It was a big week at the D.C. Circuit, which handed down the en banc decision in the Al Bahlul military commission case. It’s a complicated decision: a mess of a procedural history, lots of separate opinions, very little clarity, and strange areas of unanimity. It’s also got big implications for the future of military commissions.  So in . . .
Read more »

On Monday’s Argument in Al-Bahlul

By
Tuesday, October 1, 2013 at 3:00 PM

Just as performers sometimes single out one member of the audience to reach, advocates in an en banc rehearing at a federal appeals court don’t always expect to win over a majority.  The government showed a couple of years ago in Ashcroft v. al-Kidd (finding that the Attorney General had qualified immunity in a lawsuit . . .
Read more »

Handicapping al Bahlul

By
Sunday, September 29, 2013 at 10:54 PM

Raff already outlined the issues the en banc D.C. Circuit (minus Judge Srinivasan) will confront in tomorrow’s oral argument in al Bahlul v. United States, and I have very little of substance to add to Jen Daskal’s thorough analysis over at Just Security, or Marty Lederman’s addendum thereto. Instead, I thought I’d take a slightly different tack, . . .
Read more »

Defense Counsel to DCCA: Still No Face Time with Al-Bahlul

By
Tuesday, August 20, 2013 at 9:13 PM

The defense lawyer for Guantanamo detainee and military commission convict Ali Hamza Ahmad Suliman Al-Bahlul has reported to the D.C. Circuit once more on his efforts to meet with his client. The D.C. Circuit ordered that counsel collect an affirmation by the detainee himself indicating that he would like to continue to appeal his conviction. . . .
Read more »

Al-Bahlul’s En Banc Reply Brief Available

By
Friday, August 9, 2013 at 7:14 AM

The reply was filed yesterday by counsel for Guantanamo detainee.  En banc briefing in the appeal of his military commission conviction is now seemingly complete. In the reply’s “Summary of Argument” section, Al-Bahlul emphasizes the straightforwardness of his case: All we ask is that this Court apply settled law to undisputed facts. None of the offenses in this . . .
Read more »

Final Word on the Bahlul Brief

By
Wednesday, July 31, 2013 at 7:11 AM

Steve’s latest insightful and well-argued comments on Former Government Officials and Military Lawyers’ amicus brief in al Bahlul highlight one important difference between us, but obscure that issue with other arguments that are more easily resolved.  I’ll address these preliminary points first, and then address the really significant difference. Despite what Steve contends (citing Kevin . . .
Read more »

My Last Word on the New Bahlul Amicus

By
Tuesday, July 30, 2013 at 3:07 PM

Thanks to his “sur-reply”, I finally understand the premise of Peter Margulies’s argument—and his amicus brief—in al Bahlul with regard to why the en banc D.C. Circuit can affirm Bahlul’s conspiracy conviction even though conspiracy is not a war crime under international law: Because Bahlul was actually tried for murder, even though no one in . . .
Read more »

Sur-Reply to Heller on al Bahlul

By
Tuesday, July 30, 2013 at 7:42 AM

Kevin’s most recent posts (here and here) continue to demonstrate his seriousness and salutary concern for defendants’ rights; the same is true for Steve.  However, Kevin and Steve’s posts don’t undermine Former Government Officials and Military Lawyers’ amicus brief asking the en banc D.C. Circuit to uphold the military commission conviction of former bin Laden . . .
Read more »

Three Questions for Peter Margulies on the New Bahlul Amicus Brief

By
Monday, July 29, 2013 at 12:15 PM

There’s a lot to say about Peter Margulies’ reply to my and Kevin Heller’s criticisms of the “former government officials’” amicus brief in al Bahlul–the military commission appeal currently pending before the en banc D.C. Circuit, where the central question is whether the commission lawfully had jurisdiction to try and convict Bahlul of “conspiracy.” To put . . .
Read more »

The Two Fundamental Flaws in the New Bahlul Amicus Brief

By
Friday, July 26, 2013 at 10:44 AM

Raff already flagged yesterday’s filing of an amicus brief in support of the government in the Al Bahlul military commission appeal before the en banc D.C. Circuit by “former government officials, former military lawyers, and scholars of national security law,” a group that includes Ben, Ken, and two of my casebook co-authors–among others. At the . . .
Read more »

Amicus Briefs in Al-Bahlul v. U.S.: Former Gov’t Officials, Military Lawyers & Scholars, And the Washington Legal Foundation

By
Thursday, July 25, 2013 at 7:00 PM

Two amicus briefs were delivered today in the en banc phase of GTMO detainee Ali Hamza Ahmad Suleiman Al-Bahlul’s appeal to the D.C. Circuit. The accused, as readers well know, was convicted by a military commission for, among other things, standalone conspiracy. The first brief, from former government officials, scholars and military lawyers (disclosure: Ben and . . .
Read more »

The Government’s Bahlul En Banc Brief

By
Thursday, July 11, 2013 at 7:32 AM

Get it here. My personal prediction: The only chance the government has of prevailing before the court is if the judges conclude that Ali Hamza Al Bahlul has not willingly filed an appeal. The government’s merits arguments are going nowhere. Here’s the government’s summary of its argument: 1. In the Military Commissions Act of 2006, Congress . . .
Read more »